We chose to visit Carlsbad Caverns National Park because spelunking is an activity John has wanted to experience for sometime. The caves at Carlsbad are open even while most of the caves nationwide have been closed in an attempt to slow the spread of white-nose syndrome (if you don’t know about the ecological disaster that Read More →

From Big Bend National Park, we headed north to Carlsbad, New Mexico. We had a ticket for a cave tour at Carlsbad Caverns National park for Monday, and arrived in Carlsbad on Friday to spend the weekend resting and doing errands. After spending Saturday washing clothes and replenishing our supply of groceries, we spent Sunday Read More →

Ninth day, Jan 8 I set out alone from our campsite in Ocotillo Grove to hike Chimneys trail, which the map shows is just a couple miles up the unpaved road from our site. I underestimated the distance from our camp to the trailhead along the road, and it took nearly two hours to get Read More →

Sixth day, Jan 5 I awoke when the sky was still dark and went outside after breakfast to watch the sunrise. Even with my down sleeping bag, it was too cold to sit still and enjoy the morning, so I decided to go for a bike ride as soon as it was light enough. I Read More →

Fourth day, Jan 3 For the first seven weeks of this road trip, we spent nearly a third of our nights backpacking, but we have not been on an overnight trip since that epic 100 Mile Wilderness adventure. Coming up to our Big Bend visit, John suggested that we go on a backpacking trip. I Read More →

First day, December 31 Our first campsite was Gravel Pit #1, a few miles upstream on the Rio Grande from Rio Grande Village, where we were booked for three nights. The ranger who helped us plan our itinerary promised that the Gravel Pit had nice sites, despite the unglamorous name. She did not lie. We Read More →

We’ve recently left Big Bend National Park after a ten day stay. Ten days is by far the longest we have stayed at any one place since leaving Florida, but Big Bend is so large that it hardly counts as ‘one place’. We stayed at four different campsites, exploring the different regions of the park Read More →

While in Austin we decided to go to Big Bend National Park, but needed some time to plan, so we stopped at a state park on the way. John chose Garner State Park because it had good reviews on Google+. Once there I realized why it had good reviews on the social networking site, while Read More →

Austin is home to a packaging-free grocery store,  In.gredients, that I read about on one of the environmental blogs I follow. This was our first stop in the city to stock up on bulk goods in addition to the fresh veggies we picked up in the morning at a great farmers’ market in Bastrop. From there, we parked Read More →